DuPont Chair and Chief Executive Officer Ellen Kullman unveiled a newly expanded research facility at Delmas, South Africa, that will serve as the core of the DuPont Africa regional technology centre.
The technology centre is designed to help advance DuPont's ongoing efforts to accelerate seed product development for Africa's farmers and help them better manage key agronomic challenges, including pest and disease pressure, climate volatility and nutrient-depleted soils.
"Agriculture has a vital role to play in the social and economic security of African countries. We are harnessing DuPont's global science capabilities and resources to create local solutions that improve productivity for farmers in South Africa and throughout the continent," said Kullman. "We believe this technology centre will be a catalyst for innovation and collaboration to help feed a growing population in Africa and around the world."
Delmas will serve as the central hub of the regional technology centre, which is comprised of a network of existing DuPont Pioneer and Pannar research facilities and testing locations throughout Africa. The Africa regional technology centre as a whole will help drive the seed research and development (R&D) product pipelines for DuPont Pioneer and Pannar, capitalising on complementary germplasm pools and developing innovative solutions for customers of both brands.
DuPont noted that the Delmas facility includes Africa's first private insectary, which will raise and house insects that pose challenges to local crop production.
The Africa regional technology centre will employ leading R&D technologies, such as doubled haploids, ear photometry and the proprietary Pioneer Accelerated Yield Technology™ System. It will also use genetic breeding technologies, including marker-assisted seed selection, to help shorten crop breeding cycles and improve accuracy toward breeding targets.
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